Thursday of the Thirty-first Week in Ordinary Time
Reading 1Phil 3:3-8A; Gospel Lk15:1-10
Most of us would be glad if we are considered as good people. Often we prefer to be known as ‘good’ people in comparison with others. But, if our goodness is a result of separating ourselves from others and judging others as bad because of their deeds, then our goodness needs to be questioned.
In today’s gospel we have the tax collectors and sinners who seek Jesus’ company and the Pharisees (the righteous) who criticize Jesus.
The mystery of incarnation reminds us that God came and became man among us not because we were righteous but sinners. God’s love is so unconditional and gratuitous. Both the parables reflect the steadfast love of God who eagerly seeks to unite all into his company, specially the lost.
In our daily lives very often we draw boundaries, label people, hold prejudices, discriminate and perpetuate separation.
Paul, who was a Pharisee and one who fulfilled the requirements by performing good deeds, realizes that the surpassing knowledge of Christ (Jesus’ mindset and attitudes) was greater than those man-made laws which made him superior to others
May we who partake of the unconditional love of Jesus our master during this Eucharistic celebration grow into the spirituality of communion and openness rather than that of separation. May we strive towards what Jesus eagerly looked forward to, that is, offering one perfect sacrifice of praise to God the Father who desires all to be saved.